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This paper describes the present status of specific heat in thermal insulating material design relative to building, piping, and clothing insulants. Test data are presented for summer diurnal temperature variations imposed upon the exposed walls of two similar structures of different specific heats. Comfort and economy features are demonstrated and related to high heat capacity. An “index of thermal response” is suggested as a basis of improved building insulation design. Piping insulation is discussed briefly. The hygroscopic value of clothing and the resultant effective specific heat is discussed as a factor affecting comfort through body heat conservation. A tentative test method for insulant specific heat measurement, under consideration for standardization, is briefly described, and the progress of this test development is reported.
Spear, Norman H.
Research Physicist, John B. Pierce Foundation, New Haven, Conn.